short film

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Art

Three Quirky New Stop Motion Shorts by 'PES'

February 7, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Oscar-nominated stop motion animator PES (previously) has a few new short films out, including Gone Fishin’, Lens Smash, and Still Life. Gone Fishin’ engages PES’ ingenious use of found materials, like lace standing in for the ocean floor and antique skeleton keys swimming as a school of fish. Lens Smash and Still Life feature quirky visual puns captured in just a few short seconds. Watch the films here and find many more on the artist’s Instagram or his YouTube channel, which has garnered an impressive following of nearly one and a half million people.

 

 

 



Animation

Negative Space: A Short Film That Explores a Father-Son Relationship Through the Art of Packing

January 24, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Presented above is the trailer for the stop-motion film Negative Space, co-directed by Baltimore-based animators Max Porter and Ru Kuwahata. The short film is an adaptation of the eponymous poem by Ron Koertge, which tells the story of a relationship between a father and son through the organized art of packing. Although both directors immediately connected with the message of the poem, the piece struck a personal chord with Kuwahata whose father had worked as an airline pilot.

“I remember my dad adjusting his watch precisely before leaving the house and I remember the packing list that he pinned to the wall of his study,” Kuwahata told Variety. “My most vivid childhood memories are connected with objects, textures, and ordinary routines.”

The directors wanted to highlight these specific textures and feelings associated with everyday objects and clothing, bringing a sense of believability to each ritualized scene. Over the course of three months Porter and Kuwahata’s team fabricated each tiny sock, shirt, and belt from the original material, ensuring an idealized portrayal of the main characters’ connection and bond over perfected packing.

The film was just nominated for an Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film. You can view a behind-the-scenes peek at the making of the animated short in a video by IKKI Films below, and watch trailers for the rest of the nominees on Short of the Week.

 

 



Animation Art

A Mesmerizing Experimental Claymation Short by Romane Granger

September 15, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

In this captivating short animated work, Romane Granger, a student at the École Nationale Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs in Paris, weaves an abstract narrative from clay and sand. The work begins as a flat plane, showcasing a field of flowers in constant death and rebloom. Halfway through the piece, which is synced to Yasuaki Shimizu’s Utsukushiki Tennen, a large mountain erupts to consume the array of flora, throwing the film into three dimensions. The extremely unique piece was an official selection at this year’s Ottawa International Animation Festival and the Festival du film de Savigny. You can look behind-the-scenes at Granger’s animated works on Instagram and Vimeo.

 

 



Animation

Elements: An Animated Film of Improbable Gallery Installations Composed of Two Billion Shifting Spheres by Maxim Zhestkov

September 1, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

Elements, an experimental art film by Maxim Zhestkov, follows more than two billion black and white spheres through a series of experiments within several enclosed spaces. Throughout the film the particles swarm through different white rooms, each labeled with subtle wall text that broadly defines the physics of each animation such as flow, diffusion, and pressure. Set to a score of hauntingly hollow tones, Elements is intended to express laws of nature and mathematics, visually representing the composition of particles found in each of us.

“The film is a trial to explore the idea that everything around us and inside us is made from simple elements or blocks which can be arranged in complex relationships and become compound structures,” says Zhestkov. “We could project this idea into emotions, behaviors, thought processes, relationships, life, planets and the universe.”

Zhestkov is a visual artist and motion designer based in Russia working in animation, design, and cinematography. You can see more of his short film projects and illustrations on his Vimeo and Behance.

 

 



Animation Design

A Stop Motion Examination of Endless Loading Screens

February 17, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

Director Rafael Vangelis transforms the unbearable task of watching an endlessly spinning wheel or loading bar into an entertaining and analogue study of self-produced loading mechanisms in his latest short film Analogue Loaders. Using stop motion techniques and traditional animation he turns clay, wood, 3D-printed objects, and even eggs into 3D loaders, dazzling the eye rather than enraging the mind.

Vangelis considers the short film an animated autobiography, as he spends a great chunk of his own life watching projects slowly load and computers crash. “The result,” says Vangelis, “is an homage to all the lost time we collectively spend in digital limbo in the hopes of sudden development on our screen.”

The video was just selected as a Staff Pick on Vimeo. You can see behind-the-scenes video of Analogue Loaders on Vangelis’s website.

 

 



Animation

Sublime Opening Titles to the Style Frames Design Conference Animated by Eran Hilleli

January 13, 2017

Christopher Jobson

For the Style Frames Design Conference held last November in New York, Tel Aviv-based artist and animator Eran Hilleli was asked to create an opening titles sequence that would set the tone for the event and list the names of various speakers. The result is this short three-minute video of converging characters that’s almost too wonderful to describe. I’ve watched this at least 5 times over the last two months and every time it gives me chills. I wish this was a full-length movie, or more likely a video game, something more immersive to learn more about all the different creatures that appear so briefly. Music by Disasterpiece. (via Vimeo Staff Picks)